1826 posts tagged with history.
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As I sit and watch, I think I need to read a book.

I have become very interested in reading a book describing the experience of non-nazi sympathizers in Germany - their thoughts and actions - in the years preceding and into the rise of Hitler and the regime. I am just wondering whether the sentiment was "this cannot actually happen," "there is no way this is going to fly," "what a whack job, who would support this?" and "who are these people?" I have found it hard to google, so turning to you all! Are there books that can satisfy this line of thought?
posted by lil' ears on Mar 14, 2016 - 27 answers

Earliest instance of Atlantis-as-spaceship depiction in media?

I've been watching the 1978-1979 Hanna-Barbera Godzilla series with my son. There's one episode where the characters encounter the lost city of Atlantis, which turns out to be an alien spaceship. The depiction is similar to the Atlantis city/ship from the Stargate TV series. I'm wondering when the earliest depiction of Atlantis as spaceship occurred. [more inside]
posted by audi alteram partem on Mar 3, 2016 - 5 answers

Street Eating

I'm interested in finding accounts of attitudes toward public eating in different social and historical contexts. [more inside]
posted by alltomorrowsparties on Feb 27, 2016 - 3 answers

Famous brain injury case studies besides Phineas Gage?

I'm looking for examples of famous, sensationally reported medical case studies involving brain injury and/or resulting personality changes... besides the story of Phineas Gage.
posted by Taft on Feb 24, 2016 - 10 answers

Why don't psychiatrists ask about abuse?

I haven't been asked directly about my abuse and trauma history when meeting with mental health professionals. Is this standard? If so, why? [more inside]
posted by fair isle sock on Feb 23, 2016 - 16 answers

Semantics of the word Negro

I'm a 33 year old white man. I have always been uncomfortable with the word negro, for a bunch of reasons. So my question is: can I sing along with Beyonce's Formation? [more inside]
posted by special agent conrad uno on Feb 17, 2016 - 17 answers

Daily working Llfe of an MGM contract player in the 40s?

I'm looking for resources and sources on daily life for an average MGM contract player in 1940s - what an average working day looked like -- ideally focusing on mundane details like hours worked, how did you get there, union rules, where you entered and left, where you could and couldn't go etc. The more workaday the better. I've allready gone through Charles Brackett's diaries and halfway through MGM: Hollywood's Greatest Backlot ( which is good for physical locations so far), but its not as focused on the physical operations as I'd like.
posted by The Whelk on Feb 16, 2016 - 7 answers

Need books and movies based in the 1960s

My dad was the principle of a school in the '60s during desegregation. He was a good man and managed it peacefully. I have his stories but I think that his experiences were the exception and not the norm. I would like to read fiction and nonfiction of others' experiences during that time. Movie recommendations are also welcome. [more inside]
posted by myselfasme on Feb 12, 2016 - 5 answers

Show me the money

I am looking for articles (Wikipedia is OK) about both terrible/failed attempts to pay people for x result or wildly successful ones. [more inside]
posted by Michele in California on Feb 6, 2016 - 10 answers

Great Moments in Obscure 19th Century Italian History

I’m trying to fact-check an anecdote that I’ve come across in the course of a research project, and coming up short. In a nutshell: did King Umberto I of Italy ever visit Paris at any point between 1889 and his assassination in 1900? The anecdote suggests that he did, but my (admittedly limited) understanding of French-Italian relations at the time suggests that this is unlikely.
posted by fizzyliftingdrink on Jan 26, 2016 - 1 answer

Did Thomas Jefferson have a birth certificate?

My daughter just did one of those elementary school projects where you pick a historical figure and assemble a presentation of things from their life. One of the requirements was for a birth certificate. That got me wondering: would someone like Thomas Jefferson have had a birth certificate? When abouts did that become standard in England / British colonies? Is it something only rich people had or did everyone keep that level of records? [more inside]
posted by BeeDo on Jan 24, 2016 - 9 answers

San Francisco geographical oddity

If you search Google Maps for "San Francisco", it shows tiny corners of Angel Island and Alameda Island as lying within city limits. Is this accurate? If so, how did the city/county boundary lines get drawn in such an unusual way?
posted by Johnny Assay on Jan 21, 2016 - 15 answers

BookFilter: History of the GOP and Dems

Seeking: a relatively unbiased book (or two, or three) on the history of the Republican and Democratic parties. [more inside]
posted by rebooter on Jan 17, 2016 - 9 answers

Looking for people who sold their soul to the Devil

So I'm starting research on a new project that involves people who supposedly sold their soul to the Devil for something Robert Johnson style. Unfortunately all the searching I'm doing is pointing to him. Help me find the early deals, the famous ones besides RJ and the most recent soul sales attributed to old Scratch.
posted by rileyray3000 on Jan 15, 2016 - 29 answers

Whose stuff is better?

How would today's cheap, ubiquitous goods (i.e. clothes, shoes, furniture, housewares, miscellaneous equipment, housing, possibly food products) compare to the finest goods available to pre-modern ruling classes? [more inside]
posted by eagle-bear on Jan 14, 2016 - 32 answers

We didn't start the seven-day week cycle

Why is today Thursday, rather than tomorrow or yesterday? I'm not asking why we have a seven day week; I'm asking whether we know how this specific cycle of seven days got started off. And, has it ever been interrupted?
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 on Jan 14, 2016 - 7 answers

How much of classical antiquity was known in the Middle Ages?

I know that Aristotle mostly faded out after the fall of Rome, and that it was revived when Christian scholars began to translate Arabic editions into Latin in the 12-13th centuries. Fair enough. But what about Homer and the playwrights? Did they similarly disappear, and were they rediscovered alongside Aristotle? Would a 12th century monk have known who Pericles was? Would he have known Herodotus? The Pre-Socratics? If not, how were they recovered? Can someone point me toward some free online material where I can read about this topic? Thanks.
posted by jwhite1979 on Jan 12, 2016 - 14 answers

History of coffee and tea

I have been a tea-favorer for many years. I have recently discovered that coffee is pretty good. I'm interested in reading some good histories on both plants/beverages. I am not averse to dry texts, so don't feel restricted to pop-ish books! Who has written the best history/histories on coffee and tea?
posted by curious nu on Jan 10, 2016 - 11 answers

Winter NYC vacation plans revolving around food, art, music, & history

I'll be in NYC from Jan 22 - Jan 24 and am overwhelmed with excitement and also panic about What To Do and What To Eat. Can you tell me what you love to do and eat given my wide range of interests? [more inside]
posted by tatiana wishbone on Jan 6, 2016 - 16 answers

Practical Tips for Time Travelers

There appear to be a lot of versions of the Lord's Prayer out there. In Europe, between 1400 and 1700, how much did it vary over time and between locations? Did every place/ time have a canonical version or did it vary by sect? Is there a map or resources that show how translations shifted between times and locations? [more inside]
posted by oryelle on Jan 5, 2016 - 5 answers

Like Dorothea Lange, but inside and without people.

Please help me find photos of poor to middle class living space interiors, in everyday condition vs. spiffed up for the photographer, from the Victorian era through the 1940s? American settings primarily, Western Europe okay too. Stipulation: no corpses. [more inside]
posted by Lou Stuells on Jan 1, 2016 - 11 answers

Need good book on physical world of the Bible that isn't for children

For a project I'm doing, I'd like an illustrated book with lots of information on the physical world of the Bible - particularly animals, plants, and insects. I can look up what's mentioned in the Bible on Wikipedia, but I want more than that. I want to be able to page through an illustrated work (color) - bonus points if there are commentaries from scholars - and to learn a lot about all of the creatures mentioned without having to turn to my computer for complete information. More below. [more inside]
posted by FencingGal on Dec 31, 2015 - 9 answers

Recommend me readings on first-wave feminism in 19th-century Britain

I'm looking for historical overviews and more specific personal accounts, with an emphasis on readability. [more inside]
posted by penguin pie on Dec 27, 2015 - 7 answers

Special Snowflake Research Resource List

Please help me compile research resources for a project I will undertake in the year ahead. I would like to become very familiar with the following subjects: 1) New York City and Greenwich Village in the 1850s-1900. 2) The experience of Irish immigrants in that same era 3) The state of Christmas as a cultural entity and practice in that era. Special snowflake explanation inside. [more inside]
posted by EatTheWeak on Dec 20, 2015 - 15 answers

Help me improve my worldbuilding

As my Pathfinder gaming group just came to an abrupt end due to lack of time on the GM's end (an anthropologist who created a truly AWESOME world), I'm getting the itch to step up and create my own world to possibly GM through a campaign in the future. However, the spirit is willing, but the flesh (or mind?) is weak. I'd like some tips on reading material (either direct how-to stuff or fantasy stories with particularly fantastic worldbuilding) that will deepen my resources on which to draw from in creating my own worlds. A bit more detail within. [more inside]
posted by JimBJ9 on Dec 19, 2015 - 10 answers

Reflecting on being part of the mob

Can you provide examples of individuals who participated in mob activity and later reflected on it via writing, interview, conversation, art, or any other form of expression?
posted by Taft on Dec 19, 2015 - 10 answers

Historical Monograph Recommendations

Gifted late-adolescent bookworms are devouring my personal history library. Help me keep them fed. (details inside) [more inside]
posted by absalom on Dec 15, 2015 - 21 answers

Minor infections in the days before anti-biotics or anti-fungals?

What happened when someone in the Middle Ages got pink eye, or someone in Elizabethan England got athlete's foot or crotch rot? Did the infections just hang around forever? Was everyone just infected with this type of stuff? (It's pretty well-known that basically everyone had lice and fleas, I believe.)
posted by OmieWise on Dec 4, 2015 - 35 answers

Learning about the history of nationalized and marginalized languages

I know there was this process in the last few hundred years of European history where newly forming nations, trying to take hold of themselves, would decree one language official (French, Spanish), and try to squelch all of the many other languages/dialects (Occitan, Catalan) spoken within their borders. Where can I learn more? [more inside]
posted by gold-in-green on Nov 22, 2015 - 13 answers

Podcasts requested!

I'm returning to work from maternity leave, and my daily 2 hours in the car is the only time I'm guaranteed to myself. Help me make it the best time possible with podcasts! I'm looking specifically for podcasts on: yoga, running, cooking (bonus points for vegetarian or vegan), music, and history. [more inside]
posted by House of Leaves of Grass on Nov 20, 2015 - 24 answers

Best practices for transcribing a typed manuscript?

I have about 500 digital photos, each of one page from a hand-typed, 1940s-era text. How do I best transcribe it as part of an effort to share it digitally, and then include it in my own project? [more inside]
posted by wenestvedt on Nov 11, 2015 - 9 answers

What was life like for infertile couples before the 20th century?

Today's couples who are having difficulty "TTC" can potentially access IVF, surrogacy, medical interventions/advice, adoption, fostering, etc. What was life like for couples before these options arose? Was there shame, guilt or sorrow attached to not being able to have children ... and what did the men and women in this situation do about it?
posted by dontjumplarry on Nov 7, 2015 - 18 answers

Book title: history of Toronto live music clubs in the rock era

Maybe a decade ago I read a book on the history of live music venues in Toronto from the 1950s to maybe the eighties or nineties. I am maybe 80% sure that title was borrowed from a song title, but every one that comes to mind (e.g "Heart of Gold") is something other than this. Anyone know the book? [more inside]
posted by ricochet biscuit on Nov 5, 2015 - 9 answers

BookFilter: Expert Mode

A long-shot find-me-this-book question, academic edition! A friend has mislaid the title of a book he needs on Mexican popular religion. Do you know the book, or where else on the Internet might be a good place to ask? [more inside]
posted by WidgetAlley on Nov 5, 2015 - 2 answers

Help me learn more about the history and craft of television

I've always been more of a TV person than a movie person. Now I think I'd like to get more serious with my interest, and really delve into the history and theory of television, both in terms of the shows themselves and the industry behind them. Help me get started with this! [more inside]
posted by showbiz_liz on Oct 22, 2015 - 13 answers

Erasures. (Not Erasure, much as I love synth-pop.)

For something I'm writing, I am looking for examples of erasures. I already have literary erasures taken care of (like Mary Ruefle's A Little White Shadow). I am not interested in historical redactions sometimes called erasures ("the erasure of slavery from history books"). I do want examples like the Isabella Stuart Gardener Museum and the blank spaces on the walls where stolen paintings were. Architecture, audio recordings, scientific anything, art, and other fields are welcome.
posted by mermaidcafe on Oct 22, 2015 - 44 answers

Geography is Destiny? What's the best media on California history?

I think California has a unique and interesting history. I'd like to spend 2017 deep diving into all things California and build my ultimate California Bibliography. Specific request: I'm looking for media (books primarily, but also podcasts, magazine pieces, documentaries, (maybe?) movies) that are less a survey of the whole history of the state and more those that explore a specific time period in a specific place. More popular/easy to read or consume/social history than academic/dry/dissertation types. Edu-tainment? [more inside]
posted by marylynn on Oct 20, 2015 - 40 answers

NY Times Weekender Nostalgia Post

The Internet appears to have swallowed an almost ten-year old commercial from the NYTimes about its (then new) Weekender subscription service, which included the famous "Saturdays, the word alone makes me happy" comment. It was parodied here by the 92Y Tribeca (RIP) and was then revised by the NY Times. I am, however, looking for the original ad that ran in 2006 (according to this Time article). Was even able to locate the abridged version of the commercial, but can't find the original. MeFi's can you help me save this from the internet rabbit hole?
posted by neoist on Oct 20, 2015 - 3 answers

Books on Jewish history

I'm looking for exceptionally well written books on topics in Jewish history that don't focus on the Holocaust, the modern state of Israel, or are "complete" histories (i.e. "A History of the Jews") [more inside]
posted by gwint on Oct 18, 2015 - 12 answers

What is the meaning of 'Get high! and farewell dinosaurs zippie'?

This woman was at the Democratic National Convention - Miami, 1972. [Source - the image in question is about a third of the way down the page]
posted by srboisvert on Oct 16, 2015 - 6 answers

Is there a term for architectural scars?

Years ago I ran across a term for the scars left behind on buildings by previously existing details or even other connected buildings. The line of a former wall, a connected roofline, that sort of thing. As time will do, the years have erased the term from my memory. I'm working on a small documentary project involving those scars, and would love to use the name . . . Any ideas what that term might have been? Thanks!
posted by pt68 on Oct 15, 2015 - 8 answers

Examples of surprising aspects of everyday life during past times

I'm looking for examples of unexpected (and not widely known) practices of everyday life from bygone eras. I'll give a few examples of the type of information I seek. [more inside]
posted by akk2014 on Oct 11, 2015 - 41 answers

Birthday songs sung in the US before "Happy Birthday To You"

Looking for music and hopefully audio for birthday songs that might have been sung in the states before ~1860, ideally in English. I feel certain that I have seen a list of such songs in the past, but several decades worth of hubbub about the "Happy Birthday to You" copyright and the generic nature of the possible search terms seem to have have rendered Google helpless. Thanks!
posted by quarterframer on Oct 8, 2015 - 6 answers

Did the Founding Fathers have a "Sent Mail" folder?

Did people commonly make and keep copies of their handwritten personal correspondence? [more inside]
posted by brentajones on Oct 3, 2015 - 9 answers

Art history podcast suggestions, please.

Another podcast question! Something that will teach me the history of art? [more inside]
posted by moons in june on Sep 28, 2015 - 6 answers

Ancient podcasts

Hi! I'm looking for good podcasts about extremely ancient history, stretching way back into pre-history! Basically: anything that goes from pre-sapiens hominids to, i don't know, let's use 500 BCE as our arbitrary cutoff date. Stuff about human evolution, early architecture, first farming practices, religions, history of tool use, anything in that nice huge swath that encompasses the shadowy past. I know that's a big-ass series of unrelated eons, but basically: the older the better!
posted by Greg Nog on Sep 26, 2015 - 9 answers

VFW technical question

The VFW was established in 1913 and had overlap with living Civil War vets. Cursory googling doesn't turn this up, but could Civil War veterans join the VFW?
posted by codacorolla on Sep 24, 2015 - 11 answers

German Military Industrial Resources During WWII

If Germany didn't expend resources on perpetrating the crimes of the Holocaust would there have been a significant impact on the outcome of WWII in Europe? [more inside]
posted by kittensofthenight on Sep 22, 2015 - 12 answers

Are atheists, in fact, responsible for more mass murder than theists?

I'm an atheist trying to take the question of secular morality in society seriously. In debates about whether a secular society is better than a religious one, theists often allude to Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, etc -- the mass murders of the 20th century who were motivated by secular beliefs. Are theists right that atheists killed more people in the 20th century than religious leaders did? What notable examples of this exist, besides the three mentioned above? [more inside]
posted by everythingyoudoisaballoon on Sep 21, 2015 - 27 answers

Help me find resources to learn about my new home in Washington state.

Two years ago, we moved from Maryland to Seattle, WA, but I still feel like I don't know very much about my new home. Ideally, I'm looking for the "here's what you should have learned in 6th grade" level overview of local history and common knowledge. (I might get into deeper history later, but right now I just want to not feel like such a tourist)
posted by mboszko on Sep 20, 2015 - 10 answers

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